As easy as ABC: An alphabet of national facts

26 letters, 26 national facts – let’s go

It’s as easy as this. 26 letters of the alphabet and a random fact about a country for each of those letters.

“But what about X?!” I hear you cry. Well, I’ve come up with a brilliant/lazy solution to that. You’ll just have to wait and see what it is.

Right, here we go…

There is more snow in the Australian Alps than the whole of Switzerland – Shutterstock national facts
There is more snow in the Australian Alps than the whole of Switzerland – Shutterstock

The area of the Australian Alps that gets covered in snow every year is bigger than Switzerland. That’s right, the Australian Alps.

The town of Baarle-Hertog is divided into 24 separate parcels of land between Belgium and the Netherlands. The borders run down the middle of streets and even divide houses in two!

Chile has a government-funded UFO research organisation.

In Denmark, you’re never more than 30 miles from the sea.

A baby girl in Egypt was named Facebook, because her parents wanted to commemorate the role that social media played in the 2011 Egyptian revolution.

The Resistance cut the cables during World War II so Hitler had to climb the stairs of the Eiffel Tower – Shutterstock national facts
The Resistance cut the cables during World War II so Hitler had to climb the stairs of the Eiffel Tower – Shutterstock

When Hitler went to France to visit recently-captured Paris, citizens cut the lift cables on the Eiffel Tower so that he had to walk up to the top.

Greece is the only country in the world that has twice as many tourists visit annually than it has citizens.

Budapest made Elvis Presley an honorary Hungarian citizen in 2011 because he brought the Hungarian uprising to the attention of the American public in 1957, before singing Peace in the Valley on the Ed Sullivan Show.

In terms of troop numbers, India has contributed more to UN Peacekeeping missions than any other nation.

There are no train delays in Japan – mTaira / Shutterstock national facts
There are no train delays in Japan – mTaira / Shutterstock

The average train delay in Japan is 18 seconds.

The chimney of Kazakhstan’s GRES-2 power station in Ekibastuz is the tallest in the world at 419.7 metres.

Throughout its history, Beirut, the capital of Lebanon has been destroyed and rebuilt at least seven times.

Despite being famous for its casino, it’s illegal for a citizen of Monaco to gamble in the country.

After noticing that bodies were failing to decompose due to the permafrost, the town of Longyearbyen in Norway made dying illegal. If you think you’re going to expire, you’ll be dispatched to the mainland.

The best-selling drink in Oman is Mountain Dew.

Poland is the world’s biggest exporter of amber.

The Museum of Islamic Art in Doha – Colour world / Shutterstock national facts
The Museum of Islamic Art in Doha – Colour world / Shutterstock

In Qatar, it’s taboo to show the soles of your feet or shoes.

Timisoara in Romania was the first city in Europe to be entirely lit by electric lights. They were installed in 1884.

The national animal of Scotland is the unicorn.

The capital of Thailand, Bangkok, has a longer ceremonial name: Krungthepmahanakhon Amonrattanakosin Mahintharayutthaya Mahadilokphop Noppharatratchathaniburirom Udomratchaniwetmahasathan Amonphimanawatansathit Sakkathattiyawitsanukamprasit.

One in every eight people from the United States has been employed by McDonald’s at some point in their life.

The dragon, the phoenix, the unicorn and... The tortoise? – Shutterstock national facts
The dragon, the phoenix, the unicorn and… The tortoise? – Shutterstock

There are four sacred animals in Vietnam. Three of them – dragon, phoenix and unicorn – are mythical. The fourth is the tortoise.

Wales has more castles per square mile than any other European country.

The made-up country of West Xylophone was used by American alternative-rock band They Might Be Giants to fill this troublesome gap in their song The Alphabet of Nations.

The practice of tipping is unknown in Yemen.

After hyperinflation in 2008, Zimbabwe started issuing one-hundred-trillion dollar bills. They’ve since abandoned the currency.